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Mindfulness in Schools: What Research Tells Us

Saturday, October 19, 2013

With growing concern in the society on finding ways to improve mental well-being, including the ability to focus, ability to constructively reflect, and ability to choose most adaptable strategies to cope with stress, mindfulness has become the hot and timely topic.

At the forefront of school-based programming, mindfulness and yoga curricula are not only highly beneficial, but also affordable ways to improve school outcomes - see more on this discussion in recent Forbes Magazine's article.

Now Greater Good Science Center at University of California, Berkeley brings us the research round up of the most recent scientific papers published on school-based mindfulness programs.

Emily Campbell of Greater Good Science Center writes:

"The last decade has seen a huge spike in secular applications of mindfulness, the practice of focusing our attention on our thoughts, feelings, and environment in the present moment. While the first wave of mindfulness-based programs were for adults, more recent efforts have targeted the well-being of children and adolescents; as a result, mindfulness programs in schools are becoming more and more widespread.

But until recently, “enthusiasm for promoting such practices [outweighed] the current evidence supporting them,” to quote a 2012 review of the research on mindfulness practices with children and youth.

That has changed in the past year with a spate of new studies: Researchers have been aggressively testing the effectiveness of school-based mindfulness programs, and they are starting to publish their results."

To read the article in full, visit the Greater Good Science Center website.

Other notable articles on cognitive benefits of mindfulness for kids:

Can Mindfulness Really Help You Focus, Time Magazine, March 2013
Forget Delayed Gratification: What Kids Really Need Is Cognitive Control, Time Magazine, October 2013
Tips for Teaching Mindfulness to Kids, Greater Good Science Center, May 2010

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